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Exercise: Positioning the horizon

In this exercise the objective is to look at how the frame is divided using the horizon, and what effect this has.  Weather and location has not be favourable for obtaining horizon images for this exercise, so I?ve improvised using a shot from Spain last year, and cropping it with the horizon at different points.

Here is the original shot.

In general I?m happy with this shot – there is a balance of colours, between the deep blue sky and the oranges and browns of the grass and sand.  In reality though, I prefer a version of this cropped to give an almost ?panoramic? sense to it.  This is shown below, for reference, but wasn?t intended to be part of this exercise

The first crop of this image maintains the central position of the horizon.

I find this image uncomfortable to look at, it’s neither a picture of the horizon or a picture of the grass and sand.  The additional foreground on the previous image made for a nicer image, whereas this feels unbalanced.

The next crop is with the horizon placed closer to the bottom of the frame.

I find in this version there is a lack of interest in the sky as it is so uniform.  It isn?t uncomfortable to look at, but nor is it interesting.

Apart from the panoramic, this is my preferred version of the shot.  The foreground lends a sense of depth and distance to the shot and I find my eyes naturally settling on the horizon.

Overall my feelings on this exercise at present are, while making an important point, it hasn?t been one that I feel I?ve learnt much from; primarily as I feel I?m generally aware of how I?m dividing the frame, and do consider where I?m locating the horizon when it is evident within an image.  I also tend to consider the wider context of how the frame is divided and will experiment with multiple shots to get an image I?m happy with.

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